Celtic attacking midfielder Ryan Christie is attracting transfer interest from three clubs, The Scottish Sun reported over the weekend.
Journalist Alan Nixon believes Ligue 1 side Nice, as well as Premier League sides Newcastle United and Burnley, are tracking his progress as time ticks by on his contract at the Bhoys.
The paper states that the French club think they can pick him up for less than £10m in 2021.
Transfer speculation is nothing new when it comes to Neil Lennon’s stars of course. Some will no doubt roll their eyes at another link to another first-team player.
However, it does bring Christie’s situation to the forefront of my thinking – as well as the situation of others at the club.
The Scotland international’s current deal expires in 2022, just like other Celtic talents Odsonne Edouard, Kristoffer Ajer and Olivier Ntcham.
That’s a quartet of talents that have the potential to bring in tens of millions of pounds into the club over the next few years.
All of them are 25 or younger, have won multiple trophies in Scotland and performed at a high level in Europe.
None of them has shown much interest in renewing their current deals, to date.
Christie sounds relaxed about the situation, speaking to reporters this week, but the club does have massive decisions to make following our quest for ten-in-a-row.
Letting all four go in the same summer would put Lennon’s team immediately on the backfoot when thinking about next season’s ambitions.
Likewise, letting them enter the final 12 months of their contracts will drastically reduce their transfer value, which is why teams such as Nice are now showing interest.
Celtic’s entire focus has been on securing a tenth successive title – but at what cost? It looks like we’ve virtually abandoned a successful selling strategy to shoot for history.
That’s what many Celtic fans, including myself, wanted.
However, if Christie and his 2022 teammates don’t commit to a new contract, as is their right, Celtic have huge decisions ahead, and none of them are particularly favourable.